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What sort of crazy is this?


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That's bloody idiocy, allowing under-12's to handle firearms. That should be categorised as child abuse. The world was horrified at child soldiers in the Congo, now they try to introduce this?

What has happened? Has some American bunch of right-wing gun fondlers got into the political lobbying in NSW?

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19 minutes ago, onetrack said:

That's bloody idiocy, allowing under-12's to handle firearms…

I’d oppose giving kids a firearms licence, but can’t find much wrong with a sensible adult giving kids at around that age some basic firearms safety training. I did for my kid and her oldest. 

 

19 minutes ago, facthunter said:

The "shooters" got the last  LNP NSW lot in. Now they can shoot in National  Parks. Nev

I’d hope that such shooting in NPs is purely to cull feral animals and is rigidly controlled.

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Oh yes, I have no problem with educating teenagers about the use and safe handling of firearms, that's common sense. But a lot of these gun-fondling families have a very cavalier approach to firearms safety.

 

Remember that Australian soldier in Afghanistan who shot himself in the head with his pistol, whilst buggering around with it?

He came from a gun-fondling family, and his old man said, he "just couldn't understand it?" I can, it comes back to the familys cavalier approach to firearms safety.

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Kids soak up the culture- safety or otherwise- at a young age. My dad was always safety conscious. He had firearms and only used them when he had to. He often had city people camp on our farm and even at a young age we kids were appalled at the firearms stupidity some of them displayed.

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3 hours ago, Old Koreelah said:

I’d oppose giving kids a firearms licence, but can’t find much wrong with a sensible adult giving kids at around that age some basic firearms safety training. I did for my kid and her oldest. 

For sporting shooting in Queensland and probably most other states, the minimum age for a firearm license is eleven. That doesn't entitle kids to own firearms and wander around with them, but legally allows them to compete in competitions under very strict conditions. Most non shooters would be surprised how strict the law and supervision is of competitors of that age. When they grow up in a responsible sporting shooting family, they gain a maturity and sense of responsibility beyond their years. Safety is taught to them years before they are old enough to actually do it themself. When kids of non shooting visitors to a shooting range see firearms, you can see the blatant difference in maturity between them and the kids who have grown up in the controlled environment of sporting shooting.

 

I'm very dubious about the merit of letting young kids hunt. Sports shooting is a highly regulated and policed environment, but hunting involves kids going off to the bush with dad and a few rifles. The entire safety of that depends solely on the responsibility of that adult. It's just too unregulated, and an accident waiting to happen in my opinion. There's a big difference between a kid competing in an air rifle target shooting competition surrounded by range officers and responsible adults, and a kid out camping with dad and the guns.

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I used to hunt from about the age of 16 (had guns since 7 or 8, starting with the old Daisy BB gun).  Willedoo is right, it's a recipe for disaster.  We'd go out on the back of a 17yo mate's Hilux, sometimes no responsible adults at all, and although we were all experienced with firearms we didn't have the maturity or life experience to realize the danger.

I remember one night where we had a mate's younger brother along - he would have been about 15.  The driver stopped as the spotlight had picked up a wallaby.  He jumped out with his .270, lined up over the bonnet and fired just as the younger brother got out of the other side and was walking forward to see what was going on.  The blast of the .270 ruptured his eardrum and he was damn lucky he hadn't taken another step, or he might have copped it in the head.

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Having posted the above, I must also admit to a bias against hunting. I grew up on a farm and have been handling firearms from a young age, but don't like the idea of someone killing an animal for pleasure or sport. I think that's wrong, the exceptions being the necessary destruction of feral animals. Taking young kids hunting and teaching them to kill is a bit too gung ho for my liking. If they want to shoot animals, let them grow up and make that decision for themselves.

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13 hours ago, willedoo said:

When they grow up in a responsible sporting shooting family, they gain a maturity and sense of responsibility beyond their years…

In my teaching career I proved this principle often: when kids are given responsibility they step up. Very few will let you down. I’ve visited households where a the little kid was keeping the show on the road. When adults in authority overprotect kids from the realities of life, too often the outcomes are worse.

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